Josh Bentley’s review published on Letterboxd:
This might be my favorite film of 2020.
You know that saying, "You don't know what you have until it's gone?" Well, my greatest fear is losing my hearing or my sight. Music and movies mean so much to me. And to embrace that fear, and portray it on the screen, is much easier said than done. Riz Ahmed not only captures that fear, bottles it up, but unleashes it with the power unlike I've ever seen.
The film brings up a question that is sure to be talked about for many years to come -- are disabilities something to fix, or something to embrace? Ruben's conflict in the deaf community, and his own internal conflicts as a musician and a partner, are so delicately balanced and expertly portrayed.
For a movie about a metal drummer, Sound of Metal is very subdued and even serene. From the camerawork, to the acting, to the directing, nothing is out of place or violent. And surely people will talk about the sound design -- it's mint.
The humming of tinnitus and hearing loss. The tweets of the birds, the brush of the wind, the chatter of passer-bys. The sound, and more importantly Ruben's hearing (or lack there of), becomes an additional character in the film.
Really, really incredible filmmaking here. Riz Ahmed is my choice for best actor. And it was so nice to Olivia Cooke again (Me, Earl and the Dying Girl).
Watched on Prime Video: